Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Elder Christian Tanner - The Blessings of Hard Work and Faith

Happy Halloween from Elder Tanner

 I thought I would send some stories that happened this week.

But first the language. Its time for a langauge story. My companion and I went to the grocery store to buy some stuff so we can make dinner...and get some munchies. While we were at the cash register I just told the guy that we (my comp and I) would pay togeather and we'll just split the price. He asked how the price was going to be split, so I told him. But Bilodeau and I were speaking English to each other at the same time. So I was switching back and forth between Swedish and English without a problem. Then the guy asked me "How long have you lived in Sweden?" And I said 4 months. His face was just like WHOA! I dont even know how to describe his facial expression. It cracked me up though. He complemented me on my Swedish and was blown away that I knew so much after 4 months. Its called Gift of Tounges, brother. Join our church and I'll teach you all about it. Haha. No but it was super cool. Its experiences like that that make me feel really good.

On Thursday we had District Meeting. I have always enjoyed District Meetings. It's such valuable time to talk with everyone in your district and just share success stories, give new ideas on finding investigators, and just anything that can help the district. This week at District Meeting I just felt (again!) so happy to have 4 missionaries in Halmstad. Millsap and I produced on average about 7 lessons a week. Bilodeau and I are up to about 10 and the sisters are also up to about 10. The goal in the mission is 20 per companionship per week, but thats a bit difficute here in Halmstad. The effectiveness has more than doubled, as it should. Its a big blessing, having 4 missionaires here. Also a big blessing to have hard working missionaries here (not to brag on myslef or anything;) ) For our game we made paper pumpkins to put up in our appartment for HALLOWEEN decorations!!!!!!!

Okay, this next story is... well.. interesting. It was a serious deal while it was happening, but then it just turned into a big joke. Do you remember a few weeks ago when I told you the Sisters were getting texts that were mildly treating? Saying to get out of Sweden and leave them in peace. Well, over the past few weeks they started getting more and more. So finally Bilbo and I called the ZL's and just told them about it. So the ZL's called the Sisters. The Sisters just said they could handle it and not to worry. Well, one day this week the number calls them. Apparently it was an old Swedish guy. He wanted to meet with the sisters. Well, the sisters called us and said they were going to meet with him, but they wanted us there too. Just in case, you know, things got bad. Because this guy was a little creepy. So after district meeting the Sisters call this guy and say they want to meet at the Library right now. He agrees and says he'll be there at 3. Bilbo and I walk into the Library and the sisters follow about 20 seconds behind (because we cant be seen together, obviously. Thats suspicious.). Bilbo goes to the computers that are by the entrance, and I sit casusaly on the chairs by the news papers. The sisters waited by the front door. And we just waited. I was really getting into this. This was like legit Detective stuff. I had my camera out and everything. But it was totaly desguised. No one had any idea. Well, we wait for like 10 minutes and he hasn't even shown up. So the sisters call him and ask where he is at. HAHA turns out he was in Stockholm the entire time and we're in Halmstad. HAHAHA. We are were all just laughing sooo hard. Definelty one for the journal.

Wedensday was the first day we were "open" at the church for people to come in and do family history, have a tour, or whatever. Well, this random guy just walks in and asked for a "mormon bible." We were shocked! So we gave him a Book of Mormon. He started to ask about Joseph Smith and the restoration. So we pullled up some chairs and started a lesson. We find out his name is Markus and that he has several mental and physical issues. He as aspurgers syndrom. He said he was sick and explained everything about him. I felt prompted to ask him for a blessing. He said he would "love" one. We explained how we have Gods power and authortiy here on earth and he had 0 problems with it. He knew we spoke the truth. So, Bilodeau and I gave him a blessing. It was interesting, but it was amazing and the spirit was most definelty there. After the blessing we just keep talking to him. He was very grateful for the blessing. Again, I felt another prompting to ask him to be baptized. Which, was strange, because I met this guy half an hour ago. I asked him "have you been baptized into any churches" and he told us he had. Then I asked if he would like to see our baptizmal font. He said he would. So we showed it to him. He started asking really random questions about baptism. So we explained how it was done. He said "Can I be baptized?" but the part that caught me off guard was "right now? can i be baptised RIGHT NOW?" Whoa.... how does one expect that? We explained to him that he has to keep commitments, come to church, and go through some lessons with us first. Then he can get baptized. He promised he'd be in Church that next sunday and promised he'd read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. Now if this isn't amazing enough, when he first walked in he said he had been trying to work up the courage to come and talk to us at the church for over a month. And this is our FIRST day open. And to continue on that, the way he found out about our church is through an in-active member named Jeff Wilmart, who we visited a few months ago. We have in-actives doing missionary work. Pretty amazing, huh? Well, later that night we get a call from Markus. He calls and says he is at the Hospital in the Psychiatric ward (however thats spelled) and that he is there against his will. I asked if he would be in church on sunday and he said no because he can't leave the hospital for 3 weeks.  Oh bother. Well, on sunday afternoon we went and visited him. The psych ward was like a halloween haunted house in real life i felt like. I was a little bit scared. Patients were looking at us and I was a little uncomfortable. But we talked with him for about 20-30 minutes. He said he'd been reading the Book of Mormon. It was really hard though. We are going to take bishop with us next week to visit him. So its been interesting. But its been a big lesson for me and its even been a big blessing. Thats all I am really going to say on that, even though I told you next to nothing.

Now that I have actually taught some lessons with investigators not as a greenie, I can see how it actually is. I never said much with Millsap. But with Bilodeau we play off each other really nicely and I feel like we give good lessons. I know that I am here in Halmstad at this time for a reason and that I am with the companion that I am with. And I know the Lord has big plans for Halmstad and big plans for us. We just have to keep "work hard, have faith, and let the blessings come!" as I have seen it happen.

Love you and miss you all!
 Äldste Tanner

P.S. We have hurricane wind warnings today. It crazy outside! Pretty cool! Gotta love living on the coast! Dont worry grandma, everything is okay!! :)
This guy told Äldste Tanner that if he could get out of the handcuffs without help he would go to Church... he went to church the following Sunday.


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